Monday, July 07, 2008

After The Holiday

UPDATE 11:20 PM 7/7/08: AllAccess confirms, as do our own sources within WNCX, that the below moves on the WNCX Morning Show are permanent. It's indeed "Miller, Mihalik and Mike" now, and yes, that is former WDOK programmer Scott Miller aboard at 98.5...he's been in the chair since last week.

The artist known solely as "Mud" on the show is no longer with WNCX.

And we don't feel as bad now for mangling the spelling of Kim Mihalik's last name in previous items. At least we didn't use a "C" like AllAccess did...


We're back, post-fireworks, and tracking some items we've touched upon before - along with some brand-new, developing stuff...

DIFFERENT M?: OMW had heard rumblings that CBS Radio classic rock WNCX/98.5 Cleveland had made a change on its "WNCX Morning Show", and we quickly verified it with a listen to the show this morning.

We are reasonably sure that it's the former program director of CBS Radio sister AC WDOK/102.1, Scott Miller, taking the lead role in what's being touted on-air as "Miller, Mihalik and Mike". The other two cast members, Kim Mihalik and Mike Olszewski, are still in place.

(Our doubt about Mr. Miller comes only from the fact that we never heard him on-air at WDOK, and we didn't hear him use his full name on WNCX this morning. But we're operating under the assumption that it's him.)

OMW has no idea of the status of "Mud", the "M105" veteran known in various places as "J. Mudcliff", "The Mudd" and even Wynn Richards. (As far as we know, he's always just been touted as "Mud" on WNCX.)

We can't say for certain that he's no longer associated with the show or the station, and don't know if the Miller placement is permanent or a temporary fill-in.

And at least some of these folks have been OMW readers in the past, along with some other WNCX personnel, so we'd appreciate a heads up or clarification of what's going on.

The station's webpage for the "MMM" show is "under construction", with a cryptic message:

Big changes underway
check back often...

It does, though, still carry the text legend atop it: "MUD, MIHALIK & MIKE in the MORNINGS"...though the only content is a link to an "Indians GameFace" interview with WNCX assistant program director and show producer Dave Jockers...

LOCAL AWARD: Northeast Ohio has become busier and busier on the syndicated radio front, and one driving force in that activity picked up an award at a recent broadcasting convention.

Beachwood-based Envision Radio Networks President and CEO Danno Wolkoff received the 2008 Rockwell Award at the Conclave Learning Conference in Minneapolis late last month. The Rockwell is a "lifetime achievement award".

Wolkoff was presented the award by MJI Broadcasting founder Joshua Feigenbaum, who Wolkoff considers an "early inspiration" from his own days working at MJI. The local syndicator's boss also kicked in $2600 to the group's Rockwell Scholarship Fund.

The Beachwood company calls itself "the largest independently owned affiliate relations company in America with more than twenty-five years of experience in radio syndication", and represents a laundry list of both short-form and long-form radio programming, along with various off-air and Internet services...

CLEARING UP TIFFIN AND FINDLAY: OMW readers in the region are helping us get a handle on the recent moves by BAS Broadcasting, which just filed to flip away the Findlay/Tiffin-area stations it picked up in the Clear Channel small market sell-off.

First, to WPFX/107.7 North Baltimore.

The station once known as classic rock "The Fox" was flipped to AC "My 107.7" as a virtual clone of Clear Channel Canton AC outlet WHOF/101.7 "My 101.7" - just a few weeks ago. After BAS closed on the station last week, it went silent...and our sources in the area say it was still off the air this weekend.

We passed along an AllAccess report that WPFX was being sold again, this time to a company called "Toledo Radio" headed by a Daniel Dudley. But our institutional knowledge of the Toledo market is not very broad, so we didn't recognize Dudley's previous turn in Toledo radio ownership.

As it turns out, he owned Toledo rocker WBUZ "The Buzz 106.5", a station now known as Cumulus alt-rocker WRWK/106.5 "The Zone", in the mid-to-late 1990s. He eventually launched an LMA/simulcast on cross-market WJZE/97.3.

Dudley also was responsible for bringing then-syndicated radio morning star Howard Stern to the Toledo radio market. Cumulus dumped Stern - who would eventually leave over-air radio for Sirius - about a year after buying 106.5 from Dudley.

Much of this information is courtesy of old Toledo newspaper articles found on a Howard Stern fan site which kept track of Stern's various syndicated markets.

As before, we don't know if Dudley is considering moving WPFX north to act as a Toledo rimshot, or if he could even do that, technically...

AND ABOUT TIFFIN: An OMW reader in the area tells us that, at least according to the local buzz/rumor mill, that the incoming new owner of former Clear Channel-turned-BAS Broadcasting WTTF/1600 Tiffin is indeed syndicated morning talk radio host Doug Stephan.

We hear Stephan is a graduate of Tiffin's Heidelberg College, which would explain his interest in the region at any rate.

But whatever plans Stephan has for WTTF, they won't be immediate. The sale contract between BAS and Tiffin Broadcasting, LLC calls for BAS to continue to run the station for the new buyer for a lengthy period of time...up to two years, if we read it right.

We believe Stephan's show does run in the early morning hours on WTTF, though we're pointed to the still-on-the-Clear Channel-server WTTF schedule that lists "The Early Edition - Russ Snyder" in the 6-10 AM slot. If that reflects reality, that'd be a move from Snyder's previous midday slot, and a replacement of previous morning host Jason Aldrich.

(And if future WTTF owner Stephan's show does appear on the station, perhaps it's in the 5-6 AM slot. That's just a guess.)

And, "Early Edition" would be the only local programming on the station aside from the "WTTF Noon News Hour", as the station runs - wait, hang on, let us guess, this shouldn't be difficult! - ABC Radio/Citadel's 24/7 "Timeless Favorites" standards/oldies/soft AC hybrid outside of those hours...

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